Health & Wealth

Importance of balanced diet


A well-balanced diet provides important vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to keep the body and mind strong and healthy. Eating well can also help ward off numerous diseases and health complications, as well as help maintain a healthy body weight, provide energy, allow better sleep, and improve brain function.




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According to ancient Indian Science – Ayurveda, Indian food is complete and enough for our bodies. The dependence on foreign foods is not required as our legumes, beans, grains, fruits and vegetables provide us with ample amount of fibre, fat, carbohydrates, proteins and vitamins and minerals.


Despite the fact that we are predominantly a vegetarian nation, our foods are sufficient enough to make us nutritionally efficient, we are often acknowledged as the diabetes capital of the world along with adult and child obesity threatening an average Indian’s health. Why it is so? Some basic adjustments in your everyday diet can help you keep problems at bay.


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1.Controlling your portion size: Every extra roti on your plate adds an extra 80-90 calories. Similarly, an additional serving of rice adds 100 calories.

2.Refrain from fried food and fast food.

3.Reducing salt intake: As Indians, we tend to eat dinner post 8 pm. Sodium retains water in the body and hence leads to you feeling groggy in the morning. Since our salt consumption is high through the day, start reducing your intake by half teaspoon.

4.Cutting back on artificial sugar: Sticking to natural sugars like honey, cinnamon, fruit sugar is a better idea, if you want to keep your body measures in check.

5.Spices: Indian cuisine is rich in whole spices. Let your food be cooked with whole spices like Kadipatta (Curry Leaves), Cardamom, Coriander (fresh leaves and the dried seeds are the parts most traditionally used in cooking.), Cinnamon, Cumin, Fenugreek, Ginger and Garlic, etc.etc..

6.Relying on grains: Don’t only limit yourself to Atta Rotis, you can try different varieties like bajra, jowar, makkai, or dry dals to make delicious rotis.

Why do we need nutritionally adequate food?

Our daily food must be nutritional and then only we can keep our health (physical body & mind) robust and lead the life happily.

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Nutrients that we obtain through food have vital effects on physical growth and development, maintenance of normal body function, physical activity and health. Nutritious food is, thus needed to sustain life and activity. Carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals are essential nutrients which are necessary for physiological and biochemical processes of human body.


Suppose you cannot take nutritional food because of the circumstance beyond your control, you may rest upon Vitamin Tablets, Dietary supplements and nutritional supplements. But that is on contingency only.


What is dieting?

Managing consumption of food and drink with the intent to lose, gain or maintain weight.

Nutritionally adequate food should be consumed to keep healthy life.

• Nutrition is a basic prerequisite to sustain life.
• Variety in food is not only the spice of life but also the essence of nutrition and health.
• A diet consisting of several food groups provides all the required nutrients in proper amounts.
• Cereals, millets and pulses are major sources of most nutrients.
• Milk which provides good quality proteins and calcium must be an essential item of the diet, particularly for infants, children and women.
• Oils and nuts are calorie-rich foods, and are useful for increasing the energy density.
• Inclusion of eggs, flesh foods and fish enhances the quality of diet. However, vegetarians can derive almost all the nutrients on cereal/pulse/milk-based diets.
• Vegetables and fruits provide protective substances such as vitamins / minerals / phytonutrients.
• Choose a variety of foods in amounts appropriate for age, gender, physiological status and physical activity.
• Use a combination of whole grains, grams and greens. Include jaggery or sugar and cooking oils to bridge the calorie or energy gap.
• Prefer fresh, locally available vegetables and fruits in plenty.
• Include in the diets, foods of animal origin such as milk, eggs and meat, particularly for pregnant and lactating women and children.
• Adults should choose low-fat, protein-rich foods such as lean meat, fish, pulses and low-fat milk.
• Develop healthy eating habits and exercise regularly and move as much as you can to avoid sedentary lifestyle

Keto Diet

The ketogenic diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that shares many similarities with the Atkins and low-carb diets. It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.

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What to eat to cover Ketogenic Diet

1. Seafoods
2. Low-carb vegetables
3. Cheese
4. Avocados
5. Meat and Poultry
6. Eggs
7. Coconut oil
8. Olive Oil
9. Nuts & Seeds
10. Berries
11. Butter & Cream
12. Dark Chocolate and Cocoa Powder
13. Unsweetened Coffee & Tea

Atkins Diet

The Atkins diet is a low-carbohydrate fad diet devised by Dr. Robert Atkins. The diet is marketed with questionable claims that carbohydrate restriction is critical to weight loss. There is no good evidence of the diet’s effectiveness in achieving durable weight loss and it may increase the risk of heart disease

Atkins diet: A high-protein, high-fat, low-carbohydrate weight-loss diet popularized by Dr. Robert C. Atkins that allows for unrestricted amounts of meat, cheese and eggs while severely restricting carbohydrates, including sugar, bread, pasta, milk, fruits and vegetables.

A Simple Shopping List for the Atkins Diet
• Meats: Beef, chicken, lamb, pork, bacon.
• Fatty fish: Salmon, trout, etc.
• Shrimp and shellfish.
• Eggs.
• Dairy: Greek yogurt, heavy cream, butter, cheese.
• Vegetables: Spinach, kale, lettuce, tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, onions, etc.

Mediterranean Diet

It is a traditional diet in Mediterranean countries, characterized especially by a high consumption of vegetables and olive oil and moderate consumption of protein, and thought to confer health benefits.

“Researchers found that people who eat a Mediterranean Diet have lower chances of having a heart attack”

According to Wikipedia, The Mediterranean diet is a diet inspired by the eating habits of Greece, Italy, and Spain. The principal aspects of this diet include proportionally high consumption of olive oil, legumes, unrefined cereals, fruits and vegetables, moderate to high consumption of fish, moderate consumption of dairy products (mostly as cheese and yogurt), moderate wine consumption, and low consumption of non-fish meat products.


Paleo Diet

The Paleolithic diet / Paleo diet / caveman diet / or stone-age diet is a modern fashion diet requiring the sole or predominant eating of foods presumed to have been available to humans during the Paleolithic era. The digestive abilities of anatomically modern humans, however, are different from those of pre-Homosapiens.

Foods to Eat on the Paleo Diet
• Meat: Beef, lamb, chicken, turkey, pork and others.
• Fish and seafood: Salmon, trout, haddock, shrimp, shellfish, etc. …
• Eggs: Choose free-range, pastured or omega-3 enriched eggs.
• Vegetables: Broccoli, kale, peppers, onions, carrots, tomatoes, etc.

Autoimmune Paleo Diet

It also known as paleo autoimmune protocol (AIP), the AIP diet is a much stricter version of the Paleo diet (which is based on meat, fish, vegetables, nuts and seeds). It advises eliminating foods that may cause inflammation in the gut and eating nutrient-rich foods.

Ideal Amount of Calorie Intake – According to National Health Services (NHS), UK and US Department of Agriculture:

Active Adult Men: 2500 calories
Active Adult Women: 2000 calories
Sedentary Adult Men: 2000-2600 calories
Sedentary Adult Women: 1600 – 2000 calories
Children below 8: 1800 calories
Girl (8-15): 1800-2400 calories
Boy (8-15): 2000-3200 calories
Old Men (Above 50): 2,000 to 2,200
Old Women (Above 50):>1600 calories

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A perfect Indian balanced diet chart requires three main meals along with healthy snacks. Ideally the breakfast should be heavy but our busy schedule keeps us away from it. Then comes hurried lunch and dinner which we end up loading ourselves.
This should be avoided. The dinner should be the lightest which can be achieved by keeping the components same and making alterations in the quantity.
Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper. By Famous Nutritionist- Adelle Davis

Breakfast should consist of dietary fibre / carbohydrates, proteins and nuts.
As we know, any healthy diet chart needs to be implemented only after analysing certain factors like, age. Gender, rate of physical activity etc.
The chart shows the general Indian Vegetarian diet based on the gender (Adult Men and women).

Timings Women (2000 Calories) Men (2500 Calories)
Breakfast Milk (half cup) / tea (2 cups)/ coffee followed by + 50 g cereals / idli / porridge/ corn flakes/ Upma + pulses (20 g) Milk (100 ml) /tea (1 cups) /coffee (1 cup) followed by + 70g cereals / idli/ porridge/ corn flakes / dosa / upma + pulses (20 g)
Mid- morning Buttermilk/ green tea, Nuts Buttermilk/ green tea, Nuts
Lunch 1 cup cooked Rice, 2 Pulkas, veg. curry, salad, dal (half cup), curd (half cup) Rice (2 cups), 2 pulkas, veg. curry, salad (50g), dal (1 cup), curd (half cup)
Snacks Poha/ Dhokla/ 1 Fruit/ Nuts Poha/ Dhokla/ 1 Fruit/ Nuts
Dinner 1 cup cooked Rice, 2 Pulkas, veg. curry, salad, dal (half cup), curd (half cup), 1 Fruit Rice (2 cups), 2 pulkas, veg. curry, salad(50g), dal (half cup), curd, 1 Fruit

What is the healthiest diet / ideal diet for humans?

Here you will find weekly menu created using the EasyMenu application. It also contains a summary of calorie intake and nutritional content of each meal.
It is hard to cook every day for a family, especially if one wants balanced, tasty and not overly expensive meals. One has to think of what to cook, then remember to buy all required ingredients, at the same time making sure that the food does not end up unused and thrown out. To achieve all these points planning is of immeasurable help. In our family we use EasyMenu application to plan our meals and help with the shopping for food. Creating a menu for a week and using a shopping list markedly saves effort, time and money.
Below you will find weekly menu created following these principles:
• Breakfast is the lightest meal and it is fast to cook.
• Lunch contains the most calories.
• Dinner contains the lower-calorie meal.
• There is a vegetable meal at least once a day.
• At least one day all meals are vegetable.
• There is a meal based on fish or meat at least once a day.
• The menu is balanced in a way that each day there are meals containing proteins, vegetables and carbohydrates.
• The average calorie count and nutritional content of each meal should follow the requirements (see below).
• The average daily calorie intake for an adult aims to be 2500 calories.
• In order to make the meals more varied, the main ingredients do not repeat during the day.
Based on a 2,500 kcal per day diet, this “ideal” diet recommends a combined intake of different food groups. It says global average consumption of foods such as red meat and sugar should be cut by 50 percent, while consumption of nuts, fruits, vegetables and legumes should double.

The average calorie intake and nutritional content, recommended for an adult for daily consumption for 2500 calories diet should be:
• proteins – 58 – 117 g daily
• fats (total) – less than 80 g daily
• of those, saturated fats – less than 25 g daily
• carbohydrates – 257 – 586 g daily
• cholesterol – less than 300 mg daily
• dietary fibre – at least 25 g daily

Note: The amounts also depend on the age and how active one is, and should therefore be taken into account as guidelines only!

Below is the menu which has been created using the principles above using the EasyMenu Application.

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